The second edition of NBA Jam 3-on-3 inter-college basketball tournament featuring about 480 players representing 120 teams from various colleges in the twin cities got underway at the M.J. College here on Thursday.
The event which is being conducted for the second successive year has drawn a very good response and NBA India which is the organising body, is having a busy time in conducting the daily schedule of matches.
Talking about the aims and objectives of the tournament, Mr. Akash Jain, Senior Director, NBA India, said that the aim was to develop basketball at the grassroots level in India. “We realise it is a long term programme and right now we are in the process of spotting and developing talent,” he says.
Final in Mumbai
The winners of the Hyderabad leg will be flown to Mumbai to compete in a national final on September 29 where three NBA players namely -- Horace Grant, Ron Harper and Peja Stojkovic -- will also take part.
These veteran NBA players have collectively won no less than 10 NBA championships. The final will be telecast live on Sony Six.
The NBA and Sony Six have also partnered with Adidas, Sprite, Indiatimes.com and the Basketball Federation of India for this event. The NBA Jam activities will include basketball clinics and three point contests between individual players.
“Basically the NBA Jam’s objective is to create a fan base for basketball and encourage talent among boys and girls aged between 16 and 23,” says Mr. Jain.
After the Hyderabad leg is over, the event will be conducted in Bangalore and Delhi before the national final is held in Mumbai.
“We had a very good response in Hyderabad last year and this year too the response has been fantastic. Therefore we are considering ways to include more teams from next year,” says Mr. Jain.
“We will also arrange for a WNBA player to come to India for a coaching clinic sometime towards the end of this year.
Indian women players have shown merit and with the right kind of coaching and guidance they should go far,” he added.
The 3-on-3 inter-college basketball tourney featuring 480 players representing 120 teams from various colleges in the twin cities got underway at M.J. College